ANNUAL POTLUCK DINNER AND PRESENTATION
How are the local bees doing?
Bring a dish to pass and your own place setting and a guest, if you wish. Bring cash or check to pay your annual dues ($7 individual/$10 family) and receive the 2013-14 Botanical Society program.
Our program will begin at 7:00pm. Following the program, we will have a brief business meeting and all are welcome.
Our speaker will be Gene Voss who teaches beekeeping classes at the Cornell Cooperative in Canandaigua. He is a member of the Ontario/Finger Lakes Beekeepers Association. This group addressed the Botanical Society at an indoor meeting at FLCC in 2007 when predictions were dire and that many, if not all beehives might crash. Happily, Gene and his associates can report on some thriving hives.
Feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
There is only one queen per hive. The queen is the only bee with fully developed ovaries. A queen bee can live for 3-5 years. The queen mates only once with several male (drone) bees, and will remain fertile for life. She lays up to 2000 eggs per day. Fertilized eggs become female (worker bees) and unfertilized eggs become male (drone bees). When she dies or becomes unproductive, the other bees will "make" a new queen by selecting a young larva and feeding it a diet of "royal jelly". For queen bees, it takes 16 days from egg to emergence.
All worker bees are female, but they are not able to reproduce. Worker bees live for 4-9 months during the winter season, but only 6 weeks during the busy summer months (they literally work themselves to death). Nearly all of the bees in a hive are worker bees. A hive consists of 20,000 - 30,000 bees in the winter, and over 60,000 - 80,000 bees in the summer. The worker bees sequentially take on a series of specific chores during their lifetime: housekeeper; nursemaid; construction worker; grocer; undertaker; guard; and finally, after 21 days they become a forager collecting pollen and nectar. For worker bees, it takes 21 days from egg to emergence. The worker bee has a barbed stinger that results in her death following stinging, therefore, she can only sting once.
These male bees are kept on standby during the summer for mating with a virgin queen. Because the drone has a barbed sex organ, mating is followed by death of the drone. There are only 300-3000 drones in a hive. The drone does not have a stinger. Because they are of no use in the winter, drones are expelled from the hive in the autumn.